Last August, Idaho businessman Frank VanderSloot gave $1 million to Restore Our Future, the SuperPac supporting Mitt Romney
In April, according to Wall Street Journal columnist Kimberly Strassel, the Obama campaign website put him on one of its enemies lists – “Keeping GOP Honest” – smearing Vandersloot as one among a group of “wealthy individuals with less-than-reputable records” who in particular was “litigious, combative and a bitter foe of the gay rights movement.”
He’s combative! The nerve of him.
Just 12 days after coming under attack by the Obama campaign, Mr. VanderSloot found out that a private investigator – who had recently worked for the Senate Democrats and was now in the employ of an opposition research firm – was sifting through his records for dirt.
And then on June 21, VanderSloot got a love note from the IRS informing him that he and his wife were being audited, according to Strassel.
Mr. VanderSloot, who is 63 and has been working since his teens, says neither he nor his accountants recall his being subject to a federal tax audit before. He was once required to send documents on a line item inquiry into his charitable donations, which resulted in no changes to his taxes. But nothing more—that is until now, shortly after he wrote a big check to a Romney-supporting Super PAC.
Not to be outdone, the Labor Department got in on the investigation
Two weeks after receiving the IRS letter, Mr. VanderSloot received another—this one from the Department of Labor. He was informed it would be doing an audit of workers he employs on his Idaho-based cattle ranch under the federal visa program for temporary agriculture workers . . .
This letter requests an array of documents to ascertain whether Mr. VanderSloot’s “foreign workers are provided the full scope of protections” under the visa program: information on the hours they’ve worked each day and their rate of pay, an explanation of their deductions, copies of contracts. And on and on.
I’m sure this is all a coincidence. How could the Obama administration do something that would look so obviously bad?
Unless, of course, that’s exactly the point. The bad publicity may be conveying an important message:
If you’re thinking of donating $1 million to a pro-Romney PAC, please make sure your papers are in order, because someone may soon be demanding to see them.